Sunday, July 14, 2013

well that was fun


...in which our plucky heroine gets to be a Babylonian once again...

Decades ago, on a trip to the Los Angeles County Zoo, Doug (husband to my dear old friend Sharon) christened us "the babylonians" because when we get together we just babble on and on and on. Sharon and I have been friends since the start of tenth grade, and have stayed in contact with each other through life changes large and small, ending up in more or less the same corners of the country from time to time, and even occasionally sharing a house. She currently lives in the next state north, so we don't see each other quite as often; while our stories are quite different, there is nothing like the kind of longtime knowledge that braided lives journeying through time gives.

We had a chance for a rare visit this weekend. She came down on Amtrak from Olympia, and we were able to have rather a bit of an adventure day in the city, and hours and hours of catching up. Somehow, we never run out of things to talk about, with enough overlapping interests to keep connected, and enough difference to keep things interesting. Somehow, Sunday came far too soon, and our friends who were giving her a ride back to Olympia showed up around lunchtime. Hopefully there will be less time, and no medical foo* between now and the next visit!

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Last year (I think) I planted a hardy fuchsia alongside the front walkway here. Now I have flowers. Just a few this year, but with luck, it will be a HappyPlant and will thrive there, and grace my home for many years to come. Everyone I know with hardy fuchsia finds it to be of cast iron constitution, which makes it an excellent addition to Acorn Cottage where I want plants that don't require fussing; I already have several time-consuming activities of choice, and have no desire to add another, though I do very much appreciate the beauty of the local gardeners that do put most of their avocational efforts into their surroundings.
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At ATW 2013, I took a workshop on natural dyeing... Friday I finally got around to rinsing out the mini-skeins of wool. In addition, after deciding that I was unlikely to do anything with the minty-green yarn from just the copper sulfate mordant, I overdyed it with some turmeric from the spice shelf, turning it to a vivid chartreuse. The wool is hanging to dry on my front porch, where it gets lots of air circulation but is out of direct sun

turmeric yellow, copper sulfate (mordant) overdyed turmeric,
turmeric overdyed indigo, madder overdyed brazilwood, and indigo...

Not sure what I will do with these, so far my ideas are either use it for couched embroidery on wool (plausibly period) or else do some colorwork on the upper edge of a felted bowl/bag (not period at all) I am leaning towards the embroidery, since I have quite a bit of wool yardage small pieces, that could also become Useful Bags of Holding.
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* last year I dealt with the challenge of endometrial cancer, and she suffered a horrific systemic bone infection in her foot that put her in hospital for weeks. Something we never imagined as young girls in gym class all those years ago, but we are both still here, still walking in the bright world (if a bit more slowly), and still fascinated by the natural and human world we find ourselves in...

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